Case Management needed in UK government

April 13, 2010 at 12:04 pm | Posted in Performance | Leave a comment
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What are the possibilities for Case Management (xCP) in British Government departments? In the UK, like some other countries, a Freedom of Information legislation requires government bodies to comply with “reasonable” requests for information. It’s probably one of the best pieces of legislation introduced by the current UK government.

Have a look at this blog entry which is linked to a site (independent of government) that allows people to make and monitor FOI requests. Amazingly some FOI processing is delayed or mistaken simply due to emails being sent to the wrong address. If the assumption about some government bodies using correspondence management systems that require transcribing of return emails addresses is true then there is plenty of scope for proper systems integration to fix this.

Chalk Talks, Great Idea

January 28, 2010 at 4:36 pm | Posted in Development | Leave a comment
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2 of the most noticeable features of last year’s Momentum were the focus on Case Management/xCP Platform and a greater emphasis on ‘execution’. Whilst you can find out about the first feature on EMCs own channels I’ll expand a bit on the ‘execution’.

EMC Documentum like so many other vendors has been pretty good at the ‘Big Things’ such as great new features, new platforms, incorporating new products and so on. But what’s more important to those of us who actually have to convince people to buy, install, run, support and maintain Documentum system is the ‘little things’. Little things like accurate and comprehensive documentation, Sample apps, and applications that are free of bugs.

It was apparent from a number of seminars at Momentum that all these ‘little things’ are being given greater emphasis in the CMA division. xCP itself is an outcome from such thinking. Previously we had a number of disparate products that were individually licensed (Process Engine, Task Space, Forms Builder and so on) and it wasn’t always clear how they should be combined to produce a usable application nor how much it would cost to licence.

With xCP we should get a more rationalised licence cost but even more importantly a platform that is focussed on a particular application paradigm, Case Management. As part of xCP there is a sample application, Grants Management, that allows you to easily get up to speed with xCP and play around with it. There is also a focus within the xCP product management team to provide some ‘jump start’ features such as a focus on use cases and making the product focus on particular Case Management categories. There is a lot of concentration on best practices and making it easy to understand the best way of fitting the vast feature set together.

In this Chalk Talk both of these good things are in evidence. It’s a short video snippet that shows how to use a particular feature of Forms Builder. It’s a great way of getting across a simple but regularly needed feature that has a few gotchas if you are trying to do this the first time on your own. Best thing is you can immediately try this out if you have the Grants Management sample application installed. More to come from EMC hopefully.

Momentum 2009 – EMC’s vision

November 11, 2009 at 5:07 pm | Posted in Momentum, Performance | Leave a comment
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This post I’ll be continuing the theme of looking at Pie’s EMC World posts as a reference point for what I see here at Momentum. I’ll try and get round to other EMC world posters as well! Andrew Chapman tells me I need to be on twitter as well. Damn I’ve been trying to avoid twitter for as long as possible. Next he’ll be telling me I need an iPhone.
emc-and-mark-lewis-focus-on-return-on-information mentioned a seeming lack of vision at EMC World. Well it’s 6 months later and perhaps EMC have been working hard on a vision. In his keynote speech Mark Lewis talked about the 5 Cs (I can’t remember all of them, but they included Cloud and probably compliance) and also ROI (Return on Information). But here are some other things that I detected.

Case Management. The CMA division has been reorganised around 3 areas, Information Access (CenterStage, WCM, Captiva, MyDocumentum, MySAP), Information Governance (the compliance and discovery stuff) and Case Management. To me the first 2 are just reorganisation of product suites that probably make sense to product managers and it certainly a certain coherence to disparate product sets. However the big thing here was a focus (big focus) on Case Management. In essence EMC Case Management as a halfway house between the old Knowledge Worker (WCM, CenterStage, Web2.0) and the Transactional processing (BPM, Archiving, etc). The focus is on things like loan processing, account opening, HR on-boarding and many other things. These processes look at bit like BPM type problems but they are not really ameanable to traditional BPM technologies; they are too constricting. So products like Task Manager, BPM suite and Composer are being re-oriented to meet this need. It looks to me like EMC is taking a big bet on this area. As far as I know there are no large vendors offering comprehensive products in this area (I expect to get comments to the contrary and welcome the chance to become better educated). It was a very impressive vision particularly a later talk by Dan Cirulli where he talked about some design and development practices involved in Case Management solutions.

Yesterday evening there was a technical keynote speech and one of the more interesting things that transpired was a move to Controlled Releases of EMC products. Basically major product or architecture changes are released to a small number of clients for validation before a general access release. This maybe why some of the releases mentioned last year don’t seem to have arrived as quickly as expected. If so I think it is a brave and commendable move. Software product companies always seem to have a rather ‘macho’ attitude to delivering products possibly to satisfy stockmarket analysts. Personally I’d rather have faith the product was going to work when it was installed. I hope the stockmarket analysts take note.

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